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School Reopening Guidelines

 
Old 08-08-20, 02:05 PM
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CliffordK
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School Reopening Guidelines

What guidelines are schools across the nation using to determine whether or not to reopen?

Initially I thought our local schools had a plan of splitting into half, with half the classes going on Monday/Tuesday, and home study the rest of the week. A cleaning/work day on Wednesday, and half the classes returning for Thursday/Friday. Thus allowing for social distancing, and reducing the number of contacts. Perhaps 2 on, 5 off on days will also help allow symptoms to develop in kids before returning to class. So if a class gets sick, they'll notice it before spreading the disease further.

However, on top of those plans, the governor has issued guidelines of when schools can reopen.
  • 10 or fewer cases per 100,000 people over seven days.
  • Test positivity of 5% or less over seven days.
Locally, our county has 382,000 people, giving us up to about 38 cases a week, or 3 to 4 cases a day.

We were close to a case a day in the late spring, but those numbers have jumped and we're now at just under 10 cases a day, or about twice the state guidelines.

I think the test positivity is close for the county, although I'm not sure how good of a measurement that is.

Anyway, we have one month to get the numbers down. Otherwise, no school for now.

I'm not sure about other counties in the state. I think the Portland area is still struggling with case numbers. Some of the southern counties are smaller, but may be close in numbers. Several of the Eastern counties have been suffering with significant outbreaks.

Anyway, I think most of the schools are pushing back the start date for in class instruction at least one more month. October?
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Old 08-09-20, 03:43 PM
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Texas has is nailed. once everyone is infected they will close the schools or go remote learning. They are going to start after Labor Day so about 2 weeks later, like that will make a difference. Going to be a mess especially in poor districts where it isn’t common to have 3 generation households.. Some parents are home schooling or if a senior that basically won’t gain anything is just sitting this year out. crazy
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Old 08-09-20, 04:13 PM
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So many school districts here, none of my kids in any of them anymore, and I don't feel like reading all the policies that may be changing on a weekly basis.

However, some of the customers of the company I work for are Independent School Districts in different parts of Texas. I have only heard directly from one of my school customers what is going to happen.

Normally, school for this particular district would start in late August. Now, school will not start until after Labor Day and that the entire month of September will be online, at home learning. Students are going to be given computers, ipads, whatever, before classes start. It is scheduled for students to return to in person classes in October. How that will be done, and if it stays on schedule is something to be seen.

My youngest in a local college will start online classes again right after Labor Day. She took an online class this summer and all her classes last Spring became online after Spring Break.

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Old 08-09-20, 05:18 PM
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My one and only just graduated college and I'm glad she's done. Saves me the extra stress of her being away at an on-campus apartment during this pandemic.
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Old 08-09-20, 06:23 PM
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Many parts of the country seem to be past the second peak for COVID including California, Texas, Florida, and Arizona.

Unfortunately, Oregon seems to be more headed for a plateau than a second peak.

And a few states are still on the way up.

However, I'm not convinced waiting through September into October will be a huge benefit. Will we head into the third peak? Will see a divergence in paths between the northern states and southern states? Perhaps we'll start a vaccination push around New Years.

Perhaps an option, especially for the younger kids (K-5 or K-6) would be to organize small study groups of say 4 or 5 kids for more of a one-on-one approach to schooling. Could one get teachers to travel around to do classes from different homes? Whew, that would take a lot of organization and a lot of support from parents.

One could do that with older kids, but it would depend a bit on grouping kids with common interests.
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Old 08-10-20, 06:39 AM
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Florida has declined some in terms of average daily positive rates, but the death rate is not declining. It remains to be seen if that will follow.
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Old 08-10-20, 10:49 AM
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Originally Posted by jon c. View Post
Florida has declined some in terms of average daily positive rates, but the death rate is not declining. It remains to be seen if that will follow.
Death rate is a lagging indicator, but also an indicator of which populations the disease is spreading in (although the age data should be available somewhere).

Hopefully within a week or two you'll see the mortality numbers decline somewhat.
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Old 08-10-20, 11:18 AM
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In Hillsborough Co. FL they were going to do online only until after Labor Day. The State Commissioner of Education said screw that. You either open up or lose funding. I expect our Covid rates will start going back up again.
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Old 09-06-20, 05:49 AM
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It's hard for kids to learn online.
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Old 09-06-20, 09:33 PM
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A couple of students at our local school have tested positive, and there is speculation that soon everyone will be told to stay home and do distance learning via internet. Even with everyone wearing masks, it's hard to prevent anything from spreading around. Kids tend to be a bit less stringent about preventing spread of disease anyway, so it won't be any surprise if they have to go back to distance learning. Unfortunately it's going to be hard on my wife & I since we both have been working through all this.
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Old 09-06-20, 09:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Bestort View Post
It's hard for kids to learn online.
I think they could do it with active and involved parents. But, for many kids, one can't simply park them in their room and tell them to learn something...

I'd hope most parents could pass grade school, but there would be many who would struggle with high school level coursework.
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Old 09-06-20, 10:11 PM
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Our governor has made mighty stringent guidelines to reopen schools.

And, it includes < 10 cases COVID per 100,000 per week. In my county that equates to about 38 cases a week.

We technically would have met the criteria for ten days between 8/18 and 8/28... than as always with this disease, everything blew up again... double the criteria.

It is a sprawled out county, and it is possible that there are school districts in Eastern and Western Lane county that would meet the criteria if they looked at just cases in the school districts.

Anyway, no schools in the near future, and I fear it won't get better as the fall comes up.
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Old 09-14-20, 07:34 AM
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Schools in Japan reopened in June following a hybrid plan, with two day of class, one day of home study. After a month, kids came every day, and now it seems the schedule is back to normal, with some kids doing the 6 day school week. The return to school has caused no increase in cases in Japan.
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Old 09-14-20, 09:47 AM
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Originally Posted by 50PlusCycling View Post
Schools in Japan reopened in June following a hybrid plan, with two day of class, one day of home study. After a month, kids came every day, and now it seems the schedule is back to normal, with some kids doing the 6 day school week. The return to school has caused no increase in cases in Japan.
Hmmm, looking at the data, it does seem as if there was an increase in cases in Japan during the summer, starting with < 100 cases a day in late June, then increasing throughout July, peaking at about 1,762 cases the end of July. And since then dropping again to about 500 cases a day (perhaps a new plateau).

Nonetheless, that is between a third and half the US population.

And, the USA still has about 20x as many cases, population adjusted.
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Old 09-17-20, 12:44 PM
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
  • 10 or fewer cases per 100,000 people over seven days.
  • Test positivity of 5% or less over seven days.
Similar criteria are being monitored around here, and it looks like San Diego might be headed into the 'dreaded Purple Tier', due to outbreaks at SDSU
https://www.voiceofsandiego.org/topi...d-purple-tier/

Nothing in there though about elementary/secondary schools.
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Old 09-17-20, 03:25 PM
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Less stringent guidelines for K-3.

I think Springfield is planning on opening K-1 shortly, and if that goes well, then add more grades.

Of course, the youngest kiddos are so good at spreading germs!!!
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Old 09-19-20, 01:17 AM
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There's no way to gather large groups of people together without spreading the virus. So it becomes a question of values: given that some will certainly get sick and die, is that worth reopening a school?

I don't think so. I'm a teacher; our school district is 'proud and delighted' to be reopening. In our first week (elementary), three people (two staff, one student) tested positive, but that is with very low numbers of tests. One wonders how many cases will have to appear before someone says "stop."

Our school board members voted for us to return to work while announcing that they planned to keep their own children home. They conducted their board meeting via Zoom where they voted to return teachers to schools.

The rationale for this is beyond me. This is a lethal virus. It is definitely going to be present. There is no safe way to reopen a school. So why must I risk my life? Preserving any life is more important than any inconvenience, or perceived setback.

I'm considering resigning, and many took early retirement. The financial penalties for this are significant, and teachers who sacrifice retirement pay have been deeply compromised. My share of pension contribution is 11% of gross pay.

There is no reason good enough to send people to die.
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Old 09-24-20, 12:25 PM
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The K-12 schools in my town are - surprisingly - being somewhat smart. They are using recommendations from the Harvard Global Heath Institute to develop primary and secondary metrics for making decisions about when to reopen schools. The big one, from what I can tell, is that they want daily new case rates to drop below 25 per 100,000 before moving to any in-class instruction; from there, they'll prioritize high-need groups, like younger students.

Unfortunately, the large local university (where I work) had a bunch of students move in with no testing except for symptomatic students and close contacts of positives. This is in a town where there are no restrictions on any businesses including bars, other than a "mask mandate" which is unenforced and kind of a joke. So, now the university is in quarantine, and with new case rates at 81 per 100,000 daily, it's not clear that K-12 schools will be reopening anytime soon
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Old 09-28-20, 10:03 PM
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This has been a pretty sleepy city/county with COVID...

But, as we're getting into the end of September, things are going a little bonkers.

I posted this a couple of days ago.



For the past 2 days (not shown), we've been down slightly on daily cases, seven day average of a total of about 35 cases a day.

The county has a population of about 382,000. So, we were down at about 10 per 100K per week (the K12 reopening guideline). Now up to about 10 per 100K per day. And the total deaths have more than tripled in the last month. Unfortunately the state seems to be hiding the nursing home data. At least one local nursing home has had an outbreak starting late August. Before that, there were no major local nursing home outbreaks.

They've begun bringing back university students, and I think were planning some in person classes. Now at about 10 university associated cases per day. Nobody is saying where those other 20 or so per day are hitting.

But, I think the highest growth in cases is in the 18 to 30 crowd.

I think the University really blew it. We seem to have had a lower infection rate than almost the entire country. But, I don't believe there was any specific effort to quarantine university students as they came in from around the state and around the country, and even internationally. Quite a few of the recent cases have been in "off-campus university housing".

We'll see if that was just a transient spike as people arrived in Eugene from elsewhere... and the county gets the cases back under control... Let's hope.

But, the fear is that the University age young adults aren't taking the seriously without regard to the impact on others around them.

For a long time we had had 2 or 3, or generally less than 5 people hospitalized. Now we're up to 9 or 10 in the hospital (without a lot of information about the individuals).

I believe the county is still doing contact tracing the best they can, but certainly not on the level that South Korea had done.
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Old 09-29-20, 05:32 AM
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
But, the fear is that the University age young adults aren't taking the seriously without regard to the impact on others around them.
Yep. All of the major universities here in Illinois that decided to do in person classes are finding the same thing. Their models all assumed that the students would follow the public health guidelines. I guess these older administrators have forgotten what it is to be young and suddenly free from direct parental oversight. SMH.

ETA: the university I work for only has in person for some labs. We still have had 4 cases among residential students and had a dorm quarantined for several days until they could test everyone in it. We have far less people on campus than we do even during a summer session. I see more people at the grocery store than in my science building. I avoid the areas on campus where the residential students hang out.
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Old 09-29-20, 10:06 AM
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Originally Posted by GadgetGirlIL View Post
I guess these older administrators have forgotten what it is to be young and suddenly free from direct parental oversight. SMH.
I had thought some groups like the "Honors College" might be able to pull it off with careful controls, but it would be tough. I certainly don't like wearing my mask continuously. Fortunately, once home, I can "social distance".

With meticulous planning, a dorm might be able to social distance, but a Fraternity or Sorority would have a tough time doing it. Communal eating?

We have some weather now that would support being outdoors more.

And, then there are those ubiquitous "parties".

We'll see how the school manages over the next few weeks.
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Old 09-30-20, 06:13 PM
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Oregon is now publishing some hard data for schools.

  • St. Mary's Academy, at 1112 Cherry Heights Rd. in The Dalles (Wasco County): 1 student and 3 staff members; most recent onset was Sept. 4
  • Irrigon Junior Senior High School, at 315 E Wyoming St. in Irrigon (Morrow County): 0 students and 2 staff members; most recent onset was Sept. 14
  • Ferndale Elementary School, at 53445 W Ferndale Rd. in Milton-Freewater (Umatilla County): 0 students and 1 staff member; most recent onset was Sept. 16
  • Kalmiopsis Elementary School, at 650 Easy St. in Brookings (Curry County): 1 student and 0 staff members; most recent onset was Sept. 18
  • Kingsview Christian School, at 1850 Clark St. in North Bend (Coos County): 2 students and 0 staff members; most recent onset was Sept. 17
  • Sutherlin East Elementary School, at 323 E 3rd Ave. in Sutherlin (Douglas County): 1 student and 0 staff members; most recent onset was Sept. 24
I think these are all in small towns. I don't believe Portland has any K12 schools open. It is interesting that a lot of staff members are reporting infections.

While the state does report cases based on test date, they do a lot of tracking based on the reported symptom onset. And, consider anything beyond 14 days being non-infectious.

The Universities are being treated separately. It looks like OSU has had 99 total cases, and the UofO has had a total of 142 cases

OSU is doing wastewater analysis of their dorms, and has picked up a few potential cases which they are following up on.

Lane county has had a pretty significant spike in cases recently. About 1/4 of the cases seem to be associated with the university. But, there is limited data on secondary infections from university contacts.
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Old 09-30-20, 08:32 PM
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Here at Indiana University we had the students come back a a rate of 6% of covid positivity. We had one sorority that had 85% infections, one of our ladies teams were all quarantined for 14 days after getting here. Our foot ball program has been hobbled by the virus infection and the entire community of the university has become apprehensive about going to work every day. I am currently in week 29 of covid isolation and see no end in sight. This is a big cluster Fxxx and we are the ones being exposed on a daily basis. JMHO, MH
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Old 10-01-20, 02:59 AM
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Originally Posted by Mad Honk View Post
Here at Indiana University we had the students come back a a rate of 6% of covid positivity. We had one sorority that had 85% infections, one of our ladies teams were all quarantined for 14 days after getting here. Our foot ball program has been hobbled by the virus infection and the entire community of the university has become apprehensive about going to work every day. I am currently in week 29 of covid isolation and see no end in sight. This is a big cluster Fxxx and we are the ones being exposed on a daily basis. JMHO, MH
Just WOW!!! It sounds like Indiana is one step away from just sending all the students to the Gymnasium to camp out for 3 weeks... and hopefully get the infection rate back down. Risk killing a couple of students in hopes of protecting the staff?

At least Donald Trump has prioritized College Football...

Here, the UofO had 142 cases (since June 1) in about 30,000 students and staff, or a little less than %. Although a good chunk were showing up late September, so perhaps coming to town sick. The vast majority are in off-campus living.

I wonder how many of those students were hanging around the never-ending Portland protests.

It will be interesting to see if they can maintain that infection rate, or even get the numbers knocked down a bit as the academic year starts. Inevitably even with the best effort to contain the virus, we'll get some sorority/fraternity/coop/dorm outbreaks.

I'd imagine some of the Professors Emeritus will choose to do very few in-person interactions.
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Old 10-01-20, 04:47 AM
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Don't know if you saw this https://www.cbsnews.com/news/appalac...dies-covid-19/

Super healthy young man. No doubt his parents really don't want to hear about how very few young people die in order to justify football playing. That is one problem with statistics, they are too impersonal.
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